With the design cycle getting shorter each day, having a physical prototype in your hand is more important than ever. SOLIDWORKS 2020 makes it easier to go from design to prototype with the latest enhancements to 3D printing. From visualizing your model, preparing it to be printed and finding a vendor, SOLIDWORKS 2020 gives you some great tools to be able to fully adopt and implement 3D printing to your workflow. It’s all found in the file menu, by clicking File > Print3Ddirectly in the software.
>> Download our Complete Guide to Getting Users Ready for SOLIDWORKS 2020
Preparing Your Prints with Printing Envelopes
Checking that your part or assembly fits inside the print area is the first step to a successful 3D print. SOLIDWORKS 2020 includes a comprehensive list of 3D printers with up-to-date envelope information. You can quickly browse or search for your most used printers and add them to the favorites list so you can quickly access them in the drop-down menu. Selecting the face that you'd like to orient towards the substrate will show the printer's envelope and highlight geometry outside of the print area in red. You can take this a step further and use the Orient to fit command to have SOLIDWORKS automatically find a suitable orientation.
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Visualizing the Print: Slicing and Striations
SOLIDWORKS 2020 has extended the capabilities of visualizing your 3D printed part all within the software. SOLIDWORKS 2019 offered insights into faces that required supports by highlighting them in a specific color. In SOLIDWORKS 2019, you could also preview striations lines based off a user-defined layer height. With SOLIDWORKS 2020 you can now take this a step further and generate slices based on precise 3D geometry rather than having to first export to a tessellated geometry format like STL. This information can be saved in the 3MF format, which is an open-source, XML based format designed specifically for modern additive manufacturing. It not only stores the 3D geometric data but also stores material, color, textures, 2D slice data and more.
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Make: Find a Vendor on the 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace
When you’re ready to print your part and get a prototype in your hand you can use the 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace Make to find a vendor for the job directly from the SOLIDWORKS interface. This is great if you don’t have the resources in house to print your part. With the 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace Make you just upload your design and instantly get quotes from hundreds of qualified vendors who are ready to immediately make your part.
SOLIDWORKS 2020 makes 3D printing easier and more accessible with the enhancements and the addition of the 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace Make. Check out the video below to see how SOLIDWORKS 2020 takes 3D printing to the next level.
Do you want to learn more about the SOLIDWORKS 2020 enhancements and updates? See our entire blog series for complete details and videos.